UK-Based Cruise Line Lifts All Remaining Protocols

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Ambassador Cruise Line has lifted all its pre-cruise health and safety protocols that were implemented during the pandemic, and everyone, regardless of vaccination status, is now welcome to set sail with the small luxury line. Furthermore, pre-cruise tests are no longer required as guests embark on their elite cruise vacations.

Ambassador Cruise Line Lifts Restrictions

Small luxury cruise line Ambassador is lifting all its COVID-19 restrictions as of Thursday, June 22, 2023. This means that all guests, whether vaccinated or not, will now be welcome onboard any of the cruise line’s future sailings. The restrictions are being lifted for all ages, adults and children.

The cruise line does continue to recommend that all guests have two doses of an approved vaccine, and any travelers who may be displaying suspected symptoms within 72 hours of embarkation are urged to take a test at home “as a courtesy to their fellow travelers,” though testing is not required and no guests will be asked to present test results prior to boarding.

The requirement to take a pre-cruise test was discontinued as of April 3, 2023.

Some Destinations May Differ

Ambassador Cruise Line does caution guests, however, that some voyages to specific destinations may have different travel requirements.

Most notably, the cruise line’s 2024 “Grand Round the World Cruise” aboard Ambience and the 2024 “Highlights of Brazil and West Indies Adventure” aboard Ambition may still have different requirements due to entry requirements from the planned ports of call.

As these cruises do not depart for several months, however, it is possible those requirements will change before each sailing begins.

The “Grand Round the World Cruise” is a 120-night sailing roundtrip from London departing on January 6, 2024. The itinerary includes amazing and exotic ports of call in Europe, the Caribbean, French Polynesia, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, Brazil, and more, before returning to London on May 5, 2024.

Ambassador Cruise Line Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Skyshark Media / Shutterstock

The “Highlights of Brazil and West Indies Adventure” is a 42-night sailing with a variety of ports of call not only in Brazil, but also in French Guiana, Tobago, Grenada, and Barbados, as well as the Netherlands, Portugal, and Cape Verde.

It should be noted that even while larger, more mainstream cruise lines did lift pandemic restrictions months earlier, longer cruises or voyages visiting more cautious destinations did retain more precautions for significantly longer, including vaccination requirements, pre-cruise or mid-cruise testing, and mask-wearing.

Which protocols remained in effect for how long has also depended on destinations and their individual requirements. For example, Grand Turk – which sees more than 900,000 cruise guests annually – only dropped its requirement for all cruise guests to be vaccinated on April 1, 2023.

Luxury Lines Kept Restrictions Longer

It has also been common for luxury cruise lines to keep stricter health and safety protocols long after mainstream cruise lines have discontinued most restrictions. This is because luxury lines often host older passengers who may have more health concerns and could be more vulnerable to infection.

Ambassador Cruise Line Ship
Photo Credit: Skyshark Media / Shutterstock

Furthermore, since these small, boutique lines often visit very far-flung and exotic destinations, it can be challenging to find land-based medical resources in case there were to be an outbreak or even a single very severe case onboard, and medical evacuations may not always be feasible.

All cruise lines have made health and safety decisions with the best input possible from the destinations they visit, medical experts, and the evolving knowledge of disease transmission and severity.

If necessary, cruise lines can reimplement extra protocols to ensure the health, safety, and comfort of all their guests, crew members, and the communities they visit.

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